It’s August 1st and Fringe is just around the corner.
Excited? You bet we are.
It’s been something of a hiatus but the EFC is back, Fringe is back, and we hope you dear readers will be too.
The world has changed since the Fringe of 2019 and the Fringe has had to evolve too.
As such, there is a blended programme with outdoor performances as well as indoor ones, and digital shows.
This year sees the launch of the Fringe Player which will provide a platform for scheduled shows and on demand, which can be watched at the viewer’s leisure.
The Scottish government has committed more than £1.3m to the Edinburgh International Festival and nine Fringe producers to allow them to create outdoor performance spaces, among them Summerhall, Pleasance, The Space UK, Assembly, Underbelly, Gilded Balloon, Zoo, Dancebase and the Traverse.
Yes, the Fringe will be smaller this year, and the huge late-night crowds might be missing. But there will still be street performers, there will still be beer gardens and pop-up eateries, and more importantly there will still be a comprehensive diverse programme of hundreds of acts.
In fact, there are 675 shows listed on the Fringe’s box office as of today, 430 of which are categorised as ‘in person’, meaning that you can see the show live at various outdoor and indoor venues. These venues must comply with City of Edinburgh Council and Scottish Government covid-related regulations.
So what does Edinburgh look like in the days leading up to Fringe? Well, the huge poster walls were nowhere to be seen, though we did see the odd poster or two around Bristo Square. With 6 days to go, we even managed to spot a comedian outside McEwan Hall – local comedy Youtuber Conor O’Dwyer!
This year might not be the biggest Fringe, but it is certainly the most anticipated. After the 18 month of horror the world has endured, we need the Arts like never before to make sense of this new world, entertain us, and make us laugh.
Wishing everyone a brilliant Fringe 2021!